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Sunday, November 4, 2012 - Page updated at 09:00 p.m.

Girls swimming / Newport wins six events, gets Class 4A Sea-King title

By Rob Crow
Special to The Seattle Times

It didn't take long for Newport to show it was ready to end Skyline's reign in Class 4A Sea-King District girls swimming.

Sparked by a relay victory to begin the meet, the Knights had little problem capturing their first district team championship in more than 25 years Saturday at the University of Washington's Pavilion Pool. Newport finished with 278.5 points, and three-time defending state champion Skyline was second with 245.

"We swam really well. The girls really stepped up," said Newport coach Eric Bartleson, who said he believes this was the Knights' first district title since 1986. "It was one of the better meets I've seen the Newport girls swim in the last 20 years."

Newport opened the meet in dominating fashion, breaking a school record in the 200-yard medley relay. The Knights led the whole way, and the only suspense was whether they would break the record. Swimming the anchor freestyle leg, Emily Waddell touched the wall in 1:49.65, shattering the mark by more than a second.

The Knights won four of the first five events, and finished with six victories in the 11 events. Freshman Elisa Fang won the 50 freestyle and 100 backstroke, freshman Jenny Huo won the 200 individual medley, and junior Lorea Gwo won the 100 butterfly. The Knights also closed the meet in style, winning the 400 freestyle relay by .65 seconds.

"We don't win this without having all the girls in the consolation (finals), and in the finals," Bartleson said. "Those are all points here and there, and they all added up."

Garfield was the only other school to win more than one event. It got victories from Marley Cross in the 100 freestyle, Jocelyn Crawford in the 100 breaststroke, and from its 200 freestyle relay team.

Bartleson said he believes the Knights are set up "pretty well" for next weekend's state championships at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way. Newport will be seeking its 10th state title at the meet.

Earlier Saturday at Juanita High School, Garfield's Caitlin Chambers won the district diving title with a meet-record 475.55 points.

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